S'pore youth placed on Restriction Order

A SINGAPOREAN youth, who was arrested last month, has been released and placed on a Restriction Order under the Internal Security Act for two years, said the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) yesterday.

The restrictions take effect from this month.

The youth, who was not named, was held to probe the extent of his radicalisation.

The investigation shows he became radicalised after viewing videos and materials on websites and social media materials propagated by "radical ideologues and terrorist elements", the ministry said.

"He had wanted to engage in armed violence alongside the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and had started making preparations to carry out his plans," its statement added without elaborating on the plans.

Now, under the Restriction Order (RO), he must attend religious counselling and stop going online to get violent or extremist materials.

He is also not allowed to leave Singapore without official permission or to issue public statements.

His release on an RO "provides a balance between rehabilitation and preserving public security", the ministry said.

"Further measures will be taken against him if he breaches the conditions of the RO, or if it is assessed that further measures are needed to protect public security," it added.

His arrest follows the detention in April of another youth under the Internal Security Act for terrorism-related activities.

M. Arifil Azim Putra Norja'i, 19, had planned to carry out violent attacks in Singapore and to assassinate President Tony Tan Keng Yam and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong if he was unable to go to Syria to join ISIS.

The ministry, in announcing his detention last month, said the teenager is the first known self-radicalised Singaporean to harbour the intention to carry out violent attacks on home soil.

It also disclosed that Arifil had, among other things, actively looked up travel routes to Syria on the Internet and researched ways of making improvised explosive devices.

The ministry's statement reiterated that the community has an important role to play in protecting fellow Singaporeans from radicalisation and terrorism.

Family members and the public may call the Internal Security Department Counter-Terrorism Centre's hotline on 1800-2626-473 (1800- 2626-ISD) should they know or suspect that a person has been radicalised.

"This could save such individuals and allow them to be helped and counselled, so that they are prevented from engaging in violent activities that may cause harm to themselves and others," the ministry said.


This article was first published on Jun 30, 2015.
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